It’s The Bridge, Stupid

The Golden Gate Bridge tolls are slated to rise to $6.00 per car and for the first time, pedestrians and bicycle riders will be charged $1.00 to cross the bridge.

How did the people who run the Golden Gate Bridge manage to mess things up so badly?

Somewhere along the line, the Golden Gate Bridge District became the
Golden Gate, Highway and Transportation District. As if keeping
thousands of tons of steel and concrete from deteriorating into a pile
of rust and dust wasn’t enough to keep them busy, some genius thought
it would be a good idea to start running a bus line and a ferry boat
service.

So back in the 1970’s the Golden Gate Bridge District  went into the bus business, then they
started running a ferry boat service.  Incredibly, both of these
services were started to take traffic off the Golden Gate Bridge.  Amazingly, the district began to notice that revenues
from tolls were inadequate to support maintenance of the bridge.

These bus lines and ferry boats were not only taking revenue away from the bridge by reducing the number of people crossing the bridge, but they were running deficits that further sucked up funds that should have been used to maintain the bridge.

Tolls actually dropped between 1937 and 1955, but starting going up at a rapid pace after the district got into the bus and ferry business.

The solution to this situation is not rocket science. The bridge district needs to refocus on what it was originally created to do –  just take care of the bridge.

They need to spin off the the buses. Spin off the ferry boats and other transportation functions to other agencies, and just take care of the bridge. 

How complicated is that?

It’s the bridge, Stupid.

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